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(CBC)   92-year-old WWII veteran of elite joint American-Canadian paratrooper unit finally deployed, terrifies German tourists at Niagara Falls   (cbc.ca) divider line 30
    More: Hero, American-Canadian, Niagara Falls, WWII, Americans, Canadians, Ralph Mayville, WWII veteran, joints  
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9105 clicks; posted to Main » on 25 May 2014 at 12:35 PM (8 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



30 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-05-25 11:39:29 AM
I think they mean "Devil's Brigade," which was the First Special Service Force, composed of US and Canadian volunteers (the Americans weren't convicts offered release, as the awful 1968 movie claimed).  The "Little Black Devils" are the Royal Winnipeg Rifles.  Either way, a tough old bird!

www.islandnet.com
 
2014-05-25 12:40:25 PM
Hey! I liked that awful 1968 movie! Sheriff Lobo was fantastic.
 
2014-05-25 12:43:10 PM
Very nice.
My 2 cents :)

snyderstreasures.com
 
2014-05-25 01:03:09 PM
In basic training the Canadian Forces one staff member forced us watch The Devils Brigade one evening. Brave souls those boys.
 
2014-05-25 01:04:22 PM
fta "It was so beautiful," said Mayville.

I jump over Monterey. A minute and a half of freefall can let you appreciate things. Let me know when you're in the area, sir, and I'd be proud to buddy-up with you. Single-malt will be involved. Also, a chaser. Possibly women. I make no promises.
 
2014-05-25 01:06:09 PM
Badass.
 
2014-05-25 01:22:07 PM

Rusty Shackleford: I think they mean "Devil's Brigade," which was the First Special Service Force, composed of US and Canadian volunteers (the Americans weren't convicts offered release, as the awful 1968 movie claimed).  The "Little Black Devils" are the Royal Winnipeg Rifles.  Either way, a tough old bird!

[www.islandnet.com image 814x387]


Nope. Black Devils was a standard name for the men.
 
2014-05-25 01:43:01 PM
Awesome.  That is all.
 
2014-05-25 01:43:34 PM
You never know what you are capable of. Why, I never thought I could shoot down a German plane. But last summer I proved myself wrong.
 
2014-05-25 02:16:25 PM

dywed88: Rusty Shackleford: I think they mean "Devil's Brigade," which was the First Special Service Force, composed of US and Canadian volunteers (the Americans weren't convicts offered release, as the awful 1968 movie claimed).  The "Little Black Devils" are the Royal Winnipeg Rifles.  Either way, a tough old bird!

[www.islandnet.com image 814x387]

Nope. Black Devils was a standard name for the men.


Well I'll be darned.  Learn something every day.
 
2014-05-25 02:23:57 PM
Trained in one of the most dangerous jobs in the war apart from flying a bomber, war ended before he was needed to perform his position's most dangerous maneuver?

Damn, that guy must do terribly at the lottery, he used like four lifetime's worth of luck in the space of several months there.  Good times.
 
2014-05-25 02:30:56 PM
Well, I'm glad this 92 year old got to skydive.  But if this qualifies him for some special place, then god bless all the hundreds of thousands of recreational skydivers out there and the sacrifices they make to keep our skies more populated with parachutes and gopro cameras than perhaps any other country.  Perhaps.  I haven't checked skydiving numbers.  But just knowing they are out there, twirling and flipping, or maybe just a flat fall, whatever.  Their service will not be forgotten.

I know, I know, it's in his mind where he has a happy place now where he can visit in the recliner everyday and WWII pinup calendar girls salute him with their bare chests and his junk is functional once again
 
2014-05-25 02:45:23 PM

trappedspirit: Well, I'm glad this 92 year old got to skydive.  But if this qualifies him for some special place, then god bless all the hundreds of thousands of recreational skydivers out there and the sacrifices they make to keep our skies more populated with parachutes and gopro cameras than perhaps any other country.  Perhaps.  I haven't checked skydiving numbers.  But just knowing they are out there, twirling and flipping, or maybe just a flat fall, whatever.  Their service will not be forgotten.

I know, I know, it's in his mind where he has a happy place now where he can visit in the recliner everyday and WWII pinup calendar girls salute him with their bare chests and his junk is functional once again


Troll effort:  10/10

Human Being:  I'm pregnant
 
2014-05-25 02:53:48 PM
Glad he got to make the jump!

*SALUTES*
 
2014-05-25 03:19:01 PM
My understanding of Airborne training in WW2 is that each trainee was required to make 5 training jumps before being qualified and receiving their jump wings. If this guy only completed the ground training part of it, he's not a paratrooper. He's just one of thousands of men still in training when the war ended.
 
2014-05-25 03:22:37 PM
He ain't gonna jump no more.
 
2014-05-25 03:30:55 PM
A fitting use of i.imgur.com .
 
2014-05-25 03:36:00 PM

trappedspirit: Well, I'm glad this 92 year old got to skydive.  But if this qualifies him for some special place, then god bless all the hundreds of thousands of recreational skydivers out there and the sacrifices they make to keep our skies more populated with parachutes and gopro cameras than perhaps any other country.  Perhaps.  I haven't checked skydiving numbers.  But just knowing they are out there, twirling and flipping, or maybe just a flat fall, whatever.  Their service will not be forgotten.

I know, I know, it's in his mind where he has a happy place now where he can visit in the recliner everyday and WWII pinup calendar girls salute him with their bare chests and his junk is functional once again


You know how I know you're a jerk? Even for FARK?
 
2014-05-25 03:44:17 PM
So kinda just curious...why did he wait till he was 92.

I mean if he really felt he need to do this to get the wing, I would think he would have done it right after the war or a few years after that...or heck even 10-20-30 years ago when sky diving has been deemed a hobby.
 
2014-05-25 03:59:55 PM
CSB:

My grandfather was a USAAF paratrooper during WWII and fought in France and Germany from mid-1944 (I think he came as air support for D-Day, I'm not sure when though) until the war ended.  He came home in late June 1945 and two weeks later married the woman he left back in CT to go fight.  They were married almost 66 years until he died in 2011, six hours after my youngest boy was born.  Sadly, we couldn't name the baby after him, since the name was already taken by my oldest boy.

/emd CSB
//paratroopers were badass
 
2014-05-25 04:07:30 PM

JC22: So kinda just curious...why did he wait till he was 92.

I mean if he really felt he need to do this to get the wing, I would think he would have done it right after the war or a few years after that...or heck even 10-20-30 years ago when sky diving has been deemed a hobby.


Probably because he soon would not have the opportunity. I also suspect that his family probably pressured him to finally do something he always wanted to do but never got around to doing.

Sudlow: My understanding of Airborne training in WW2 is that each trainee was required to make 5 training jumps before being qualified and receiving their jump wings. If this guy only completed the ground training part of it, he's not a paratrooper. He's just one of thousands of men still in training when the war ended.


Yeah, there are some weird things about the story. Although he apparently was in combat in Italy with the force, which seems unlikely if he didn't complete the training (and the linked article states that he received his wings). It seems like they are stretching to try and make it a better sounding feel-good story.

I did know a guy who was in the paratroopers in WWII (joined in 1942 when the battalion was formed) but missed both the Normandy and Rhine drops. He fought in the Ardennes, but you could tell when he talked about it that he very much regretted not jumping into Normandy or Germany with his men
 
2014-05-25 05:32:52 PM

Krustofsky: CSB:

My grandfather was a USAAF paratrooper during WWII and fought in France and Germany from mid-1944 (I think he came as air support for D-Day, I'm not sure when though) until the war ended.  He came home in late June 1945 and two weeks later married the woman he left back in CT to go fight.  They were married almost 66 years until he died in 2011, six hours after my youngest boy was born.  Sadly, we couldn't name the baby after him, since the name was already taken by my oldest boy.

/emd CSB
//paratroopers were badass


CSB:

Grandfather was also a paratrooper in the 17th Airborne, 194th Glider Infantry Regiment. Fought and was shot in the leg during the Battle of the Bulge, got his bronze star for grenading a machine gunner position. Made a combat drop in gliders during Operation Varsity (dropped right into German artillery) and helped liberate a concentration camp. After the war he said fark this and became an accountant, though he did get called up for Korea.

/Crazy old guy made me drive him around town when I was 12, figured that was old enough and I had to learn sometime.
 
2014-05-25 05:51:42 PM

dywed88: JC22: So kinda just curious...why did he wait till he was 92.

I mean if he really felt he need to do this to get the wing, I would think he would have done it right after the war or a few years after that...or heck even 10-20-30 years ago when sky diving has been deemed a hobby.

Probably because he soon would not have the opportunity. I also suspect that his family probably pressured him to finally do something he always wanted to do but never got around to doing.

Sudlow: My understanding of Airborne training in WW2 is that each trainee was required to make 5 training jumps before being qualified and receiving their jump wings. If this guy only completed the ground training part of it, he's not a paratrooper. He's just one of thousands of men still in training when the war ended.

Yeah, there are some weird things about the story. Although he apparently was in combat in Italy with the force, which seems unlikely if he didn't complete the training (and the linked article states that he received his wings). It seems like they are stretching to try and make it a better sounding feel-good story.



The unit had ridiculous casualties and by the time they got into the fighting they weren't doing any airborne stuff as planned since the situation on the ground had changed so much it wouldn't be unlikely that he had completed enough training to sent to the unit as a replacement and never actually needed to jump at all. Besides their wartime record is badass enough anyway that parachuting into action would tip it over into the realm of unbelievable.
 
2014-05-25 07:15:17 PM

RTOGUY: dywed88: JC22: So kinda just curious...why did he wait till he was 92.

I mean if he really felt he need to do this to get the wing, I would think he would have done it right after the war or a few years after that...or heck even 10-20-30 years ago when sky diving has been deemed a hobby.

Probably because he soon would not have the opportunity. I also suspect that his family probably pressured him to finally do something he always wanted to do but never got around to doing.

Sudlow: My understanding of Airborne training in WW2 is that each trainee was required to make 5 training jumps before being qualified and receiving their jump wings. If this guy only completed the ground training part of it, he's not a paratrooper. He's just one of thousands of men still in training when the war ended.

Yeah, there are some weird things about the story. Although he apparently was in combat in Italy with the force, which seems unlikely if he didn't complete the training (and the linked article states that he received his wings). It seems like they are stretching to try and make it a better sounding feel-good story.


The unit had ridiculous casualties and by the time they got into the fighting they weren't doing any airborne stuff as planned since the situation on the ground had changed so much it wouldn't be unlikely that he had completed enough training to sent to the unit as a replacement and never actually needed to jump at all. Besides their wartime record is badass enough anyway that parachuting into action would tip it over into the realm of unbelievable.


I don't think they would've cut his training short when they didn't know whether or not they were being sent to Japan till Japan surrendered. At which point, it would've been useless to give him wings at all. If he earned the wings, he did the five jumps. I could always buy a set of my own wings, but that wouldn't mean I earned them. I just wonder what the truth is with this story.
 
2014-05-25 07:34:38 PM

lack of warmth: RTOGUY: dywed88: JC22: So kinda just curious...why did he wait till he was 92.

I mean if he really felt he need to do this to get the wing, I would think he would have done it right after the war or a few years after that...or heck even 10-20-30 years ago when sky diving has been deemed a hobby.

Probably because he soon would not have the opportunity. I also suspect that his family probably pressured him to finally do something he always wanted to do but never got around to doing.

Sudlow: My understanding of Airborne training in WW2 is that each trainee was required to make 5 training jumps before being qualified and receiving their jump wings. If this guy only completed the ground training part of it, he's not a paratrooper. He's just one of thousands of men still in training when the war ended.

Yeah, there are some weird things about the story. Although he apparently was in combat in Italy with the force, which seems unlikely if he didn't complete the training (and the linked article states that he received his wings). It seems like they are stretching to try and make it a better sounding feel-good story.


The unit had ridiculous casualties and by the time they got into the fighting they weren't doing any airborne stuff as planned since the situation on the ground had changed so much it wouldn't be unlikely that he had completed enough training to sent to the unit as a replacement and never actually needed to jump at all. Besides their wartime record is badass enough anyway that parachuting into action would tip it over into the realm of unbelievable.

I don't think they would've cut his training short when they didn't know whether or not they were being sent to Japan till Japan surrendered. At which point, it would've been useless to give him wings at all. If he earned the wings, he did the five jumps. I could always buy a set of my own wings, but that wouldn't mean I earned them. I just wonder what the truth is with this story.


The First Special Service Force was disbanded in December 1944 so probably still looking at Germany. The Canadians mostly went to the First Canadian Parachute Battalion (where most would have jumped in Operation Varsity), the Americans were more split up between the various airborne divisions, the Rangers, and an infantry regiment or two.

Assuming he joined the unit in Italy (the other article I read specifically saying he served in Italy and France doesn't mention the Aleutians) they would have been planning the invasion of France, not Japan. And the Black Devils were on the pointy tip of the spear into southern France.
 
2014-05-25 07:59:30 PM

wambu: You know how I know you're a jerk? Even for FARK?


Because you have a hero complex?  I'm just taking a stab at it.
 
2014-05-25 08:22:04 PM
brainfartz.co.uk
 
2014-05-25 08:58:56 PM

trappedspirit: wambu: You know how I know you're a jerk? Even for FARK?

Because you have a hero complex?  I'm just taking a stab at it.



Thanks for the confirmation, but it was unnecessary.
 
2014-05-25 10:08:09 PM

wambu: trappedspirit: wambu: You know how I know you're a jerk? Even for FARK?

Because you have a hero complex?  I'm just taking a stab at it.


Thanks for the confirmation, but it was unnecessary.


Admitting it's half the battle.  Maybe you'll consider taking down some of those hero tandem-jump sky diver posters from your room.
 
2014-05-26 09:33:36 AM
So... what exactly makes him a hero again?
 
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